8 Things to Never Say to a Runner

Since I have considered myself a runner for about 8 years now (I started running and enjoying it my freshman year of high school), I have heard a lot of comments and questions from other people about running, and I’m sure all of you runners have heard these comments too. Thinking about these comments and remembering the circumstances under which I heard them makes me laugh. If you a runner I hope these comments make you laugh or smile, and if you aren’t a runner, I hope you learn some things not to say to your running friends. πŸ˜‰

1. Running isn’t a sport.

Excuse me? Have you ever been to a race? It is full of people who are constantly looking at their watches to maintain a certain pace, looking behind their back to see if someone is close behind, and constantly trying to pass that person in front of them. Running is competitive, and even if you aren’t competing against other people, you are competing against yourself; you are trying to beat your best time and push yourself harder than you ever have before. Runners don’t train for nothing! Oh, and what about the olympics? I wouldn’t dare tell Usain Bolt he isn’t an athlete or what he does isn’t a sport.

usain bolt

2. Wouldn’t you rather sleep in than run in the morning?Β 

Until you begin to run or workout in the morning, you will never understand how someone could answer this question with, “No, I would rather run first thing in the morning.” I’m not saying it’s easy to get out of bed at 4:45 in the morning; it’s always hard and I pretty much always consider setting my alarm for an hour to an hour and a half later. But once I get up, lace up my shoes and start running, I never regret it. Not only does getting up early make sure I get my run in before my day gets busy with other things, but it gets my day off to a great start! Whenever I run or do any form of exercise in the morning, I have much more energy for the whole day. I know it doesn’t make sense, waking up earlier and having more energy, but just trust me on this one.


3. You run in the hot/cold/rain/wind?

The weather is never perfect. As a runner, you just have to get over it, remember why you love running, and push through the less than ideal circumstances.

good weather run

4. Running that long can’t be good for you.Β 

A runner never wants to hear this. Yes, whenever someone begins to run more and train for long races, such as a half-marathon or a full marathon, he or she has to take good care of his/her body, but that doesn’t mean running long distances is bad for you. Our bodies are capable of so much; we just have to train and work hard to see what all we can accomplish. And of course while training we have to listen to our bodies and rest when we need rest. But don’t judge someone’s situation and tell them something is good or bad for them when you really don’t know.

5. So you run for no reason?

I hear this way too much, and I run for MULTIPLE reasons! I wrote a post that you can read hereΒ about the reasons why runners love running. But to give you a little idea, runners run to be happy, to enjoy the moment and everything else in life, to use their bodies to be active and be thankful for all that their bodies can handle. Running can teach you so much about yourself, and I believe it gives you confidence.

I run because

6. Why didn’t you sprint harder at the finish?Β 

When someone who didn’t run a race is screaming at me as I finish to go faster, or someone asks me after a race why I didn’t push harder at the end, I just want to look them straight in the eye and say, “I’m sorry, did you run at all?” Don’t tell someone to go faster at the end; when someone finishes a race they are usually tired. They have most likely been pushing themselves their hardest, and by the end of the race, they are just ready to finish. Also, they probably are sprinting as hard as they can, but again, your sprint at the end of a race probably isn’t as fast as your normal sprint.

7. Β Why would you pay for a race if you can run for free?

This takes me back to #1 on this last. Running is a sport, which is why runners want to pay for races and compete. Runners train and push themselves so that they can perform on race day. They want to race against others and enjoy the running community, which is honestly a very special group of people. And I mean, who doesn’t enjoy the race t-shirts and refreshments at the end of the race? πŸ˜‰

Finally number 8…I hate when I hear this…

8. I saw you Β jogging the other day.

You what??? You saw me doing what??? Let me just correct you right now, you saw me RUNNING!!! Nothing is quite as demeaning to runners as telling them they were “jogging”. Funny story, Ryan actually told me this my freshman year of college before we even started dating. We were in a science class together (natural disasters), and we went to the same lab. I went to lab one day and Ryan said, “I saw you jogging earlier!”. Oh, if I had only known him better I would have corrected him, but instead I just smiled. Little did I know that was my future husband saying a statement I hate to hear, but he thought nothing about it. Don’t worry, he wouldn’t say this to me now. πŸ™‚



1. Have you heard any of these statements?

2. What would you add to this list?Β 

3. And just for fun, what are you doing today? I am trying to finish my book and going out to run some errands! I am still waiting on my fingerprints to go through so I can start my new job!





  1. I hear #6 and #8 a lot. #8 Drives me up the wall.I usually end up correcting them until they say running. #6 – I don’t think I have a fast twitch muscle in my body…

    I have a couple of things I hate being asked/told: 1. (After a race) “Are you tired?” Really? Did you not see me dripping sweat and struggling to walk? 2. I hate being told to change anything about my running and training unless its coming from someone qualified to do so (like my coaches or a athletic trainer).

    As for the last part: Today is almost over for me, I am going to bed soon.

  2. I think I’ve heard pretty much every one of these. I know it’s usually just because people feel intimidated (and a little jealous) by it. They know that we are working hard to stay in shape, and they’re not. Running is FREE – it’s one of the great gifts God gave us – and people who are missing appendages can do it, so how can it possibly be bad for you?!
    And yes I hate it when people refer to it as jogging. I also hate it when other runners will refer to my running pace as jogging (ie, they’re pace may be 8:00 and they refer to a 9:30 pace as jogging). NOT COOL – I do not appreciate that!

  3. No 9

    You spent how much on a pair of trainers!!!! You do know you can get a pair for only Β£5
    (that are not fit for purpose, will wreck your feet, etc etc)

    Thank you for posting πŸ™‚

  4. Number 6 cracked me up!! Do not tell me how fast I should be going if you are just standing there! I’ve also had some people give me looks when I tell them how much I’ve paid for my marathon or half-marathons in the past. Clearly, they have never raced before and have no idea how races are a whole experience unto themselves!

  5. Great post! Great blog! It’s wonderful that you are so grounded in your faith and fitness pursuits as a newlywed. It took my husband and me a few years to get on the right path for both. πŸ™‚

  6. I love the one about running long not being good for you. My parents think running more than 3-4 miles is crazy and that my usual 40ish miles a week is unhealthy and will have me sidelined forever sooner rather than later. And they used to be runners. I disagree with them and firmly believe if you’re smart about it, your body becomes used to longer distances. But I’ve never gotten the jogging thing. To be honest I’m not entirely sure what the difference is although running is perceived as more serious, but nobody has ever called me a jogger either so I’m sure I’d want to correct them too πŸ™‚

  7. Haha I love this. I completely agree with all of them! I hate when people demean me for running or waking up early. Doesn’t even have to be running, but I get rude comments about making sure I get my workout in. Excuse me, if you would start working out, you’d see what it does for you! Emotionally, physically, all of it! Love this πŸ™‚

  8. This list is amazing. I have to take like 5 deep cleansing breaths every time someone says “you know running isn’t very good for your joints”

  9. I love this! Okay, I hear #7 ALL the time and just hit my head against the wall. People who haven’t raced (for real) don’t get it. Ah drives me insane. #8 is so funny too! Great one, Becky!

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